IT will be a tense derby between national giants Simba and Young Africans at Benjamin Mkapa Stadium in Dar es Salaam today, as coaches of both sides acknowledge their players are ready for the clash.
Equally, the teams are determined to secure a win and add maximum points to their tallies.
The winner will gain an advantage on the Mainland Premier League table command. Currently, both teams have accumulated 18 points.
However, Young Africans lead the table with a superior goal difference from seven games over Simba who also have a game in hand advantage after playing six games so far.
Off the pitch, it is a South American derby, involving Brazilian coach Roberto Oliveira and his Argentine counterpart, Miguel Gamondi, who both head the technical benches of Simba and Yanga respectively.
So far, Oliveira has a clean record in the league with a 100 per cent winning accuracy, while Gamondi has suffered one defeat in the ongoing campaign.
At a pre-match briefing held in the city, Oliveira insisted that they are well-prepared for the match and that in derby games, anything can happen within the 90 minutes of play.
He also mentioned that he believes in the talents and consistency of positive results of his players, and he respects his opponents too.
“I respect our opponents, but in tomorrow’s match we have a good strategy to play well and win…I believe too much in our capacity and quality of my players,” he said.
He added: “For me, football is a pleasure and not stress, I like too much to play in a full stadium, I believe in the talents of players and consistency of positive results and I respect my opponents too. “I do not have pressure, big clubs need to win each games… tomorrow, I respect our opponents because they have important players just like Simba.
They are good at midfield and we need to find a way to stop them.” During the briefing, Oliveira’s full-back, Shomari Kapombe, also shared that he prefers derby matches because they make players grow, and he has played many derby fixtures against Yanga, so he has enough experience.
On the other hand, Gamondi reiterated that his side has had enough time to prepare and that they are looking forward to a good game that will be pleasing to watch.
“We are psychologically, mentally and physically prepared for this match and morale among us is great ahead of this derby match,” he said. Gamondi also reiterated that his side has had enough time to prepare and that they are looking forward to a good game that will be pleasing to watch.
“It is going to be a good emotional match and we had a fruitful one week of preparation…players are in good shape as such, Tanzanians and the whole of Africa will witness a good match,” he said.
Gamondi also requested his team members and fans to go to the stadium in large numbers and cheer them throughout the match so that they could generate positive results.
His centre-back, Dickson Job, revealed that they are aware of the importance of the game, and they have considered everything necessary.